Texas Football Outlets Increasingly Calling the Hogs for National Top-50 Recruit’s Decision

Selman Bridges, Steve Sarkisian, Arkansas football, Arkansas recruiting
photo credit: Twitter/iamtherea1one / Texas Athletics

When it comes to big-time college football recruits, you can usually count on recruiting reporters to wax a bit rosier on behalf of the program they cover.

It’s a business, after all. If the passionate fans of University of Such-and-such make up 99% of the readers for a specific outlet then, by golly, you want to give the people what they want more often than not. Otherwise, things can get depressing awfully quick, which isn’t the point of this whole thing at all.

So it wasn’t too surprising to see some of the top Arkansas football recruiting reporters in Otis Kirk, Richard Davenport and Danny West express optimism that Selman Bridges, a four-star cornerback out of Texas in the class of 2024, will choose Arkansas when he announces a college destination at 6:30 on Friday evening. Certainly, they are more optimistic about his chances of going to Arkansas than they were about Brian Huff, the star Jonesboro native who chose Mizzou over Arkansas on Wednesday eve.

The recruiterati have seen momentum shift from the Texas football program to the Razorbacks in the last few months for the coveted 6’4″ish cornerback, who is ranked No. 50 in the nation for his class by 247Sports.

What’s a bit more surprising is the degree to which some Longhorns reporters agree with their Arkansas counterparts, considering Bridges is from Temple, Texas and likely grew up following the Longhorns more closely than the Razorbacks.

Texas Football Media on Selman Bridges

Bridges is part of an unusually talented group of defensive backs hailing from Texas and for many months seemed like he would join one of the most talented secondary classes ever to be signed to the Longhorns. Sure, he also visited LSU, TCU and USC but Texas and Arkansas emerged as the two most likely possibilities to land Lake Belton High rising senior who finished last season with 46 total tackles, two interceptions, six pass breakups and one defensive touchdown.

It was clear how much priority Texas put into Bridges’ recruitment since offering in January since Steve Sarkisian himself made it a point to communicate with him weekly, according to 247Sports’ Jordan Scruggs.

In the span of four months, Bridges visited Texas three times, Scruggs reported. He visited Arkansas for the first time on June 16 on the heels of escalating attention from Razorback coaches and players alike. The rave reviews coming out of that Fayetteville trip are one reason that that “everything still pointed to the Longhorns being just behind Arkansas with ample time to make up space ahead of his announcement that had long been scheduled for December,” Scruggs wrote.

“However, plans would soon change, as around this time Bridges informed Horns247 that he was moving up his commitment timeline to July with a date originally set for July 8 that would later be pushed back to July 14.” [sign up for Horns247Sports to read more]

Over at On3, national recruiting analyst Sam Spiegelman provides more details about recent trending away from Texas football to the Hogs.

“Since arriving in Fayetteville, Marcus Woodson, Deron Wilson and the Razorbacks have been coming strong for the four-star from Central Texas,” Spiegelman wrote, referring to new Arkansas football assistants. “They’ve turned it up a level since the June 16-18 official visit.”

It’s enough that Spiegelman and Gerry Hamilton, the recruiting analyst for On3’s Inside Texas site, have given Bridges a 94.8% chance of choosing the Hogs vs just 1.7% for the Longhorns.

There has been some chatter that Selman Bridges is being nudged out by other top Texas football recruits when it comes to scholarship spots given he has a chance to join Texas commits Santana Wilson and Jordon Johnson-Rubell as well as uncommitted recruits like Kobe Black, Corian Gipson and Wardell Mack.

But Jason Suchomel of OrangeBloods.com says don’t believe the talk.

“I do think they’re holding a spot for Selman Bridges. I’ve felt that way for a while,” he said on a recent episode. “I haven’t heard any reason to feel differently. I mean, Sark is the lead recruiter on Selman Bridges. You don’t do that unless he is a top priority for you. I mean, the guy’s a really unique talent in terms of his length and on the outside there.”

Selman Bridges Breakdown from Otis Kirk

Because this is a Razorback-oriented site, I couldn’t just leave y’all without some words from the O.G. of Arkansas football recruiting.

“He’s a legit 6’4″ corner,” Kirk said in the Pig Trail Nation video below. “I mean, you don’t see cornerbacks 6’4”. That’s what you need, matching up with the big receivers out there, and if you could pull him and Ashton Bethel-Roman, that’s almost a tongue twister… in here in the last couple of weeks, that’d be huge, man. I mean, those are big-time players out of Texas. They’re as good as they get at their position. That’s as good as you can get, and I’m talking about nationwide.”

Richard Davenport, the Arkansas football recruiting reporter, went onto Josh Bertacinni’s “The Red Zone with JB” earlier this week to express similar sentiments. “I felt good since his official visit to Arkansas back in June,” he said. “I heard a lot of good things then and haven’t heard anything to make me think that Arkansas doesn’t have a chance. If they get him, they’re beating Texas head to head, so that would be huge.”

Getting Bridges would not only be big for Sam Pittman to keep momentum from last week’s Bethel-Roman commitment, but also to sway public opinion back into his camp after 4-star linebacker Brian Huff’s announcement.

Another big get for the Hogs would be Braylen Russell, the Benton High star running back who is also set to announce this decision between Arkansas, Tennessee and South Carolina on Friday eve. “Man, he’s a tough one,” Davenport said. “Not much coming out of that camp. Arkansas or Tennessee for him.”

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